Banished brothers trying to get family back homeSubmitted: 08/23/2013
Story By Adam Fox

LAC DU FLAMBEAU - Punishment for a crime comes in different forms.

Guilty people usually go to jail.

But things can be different on reservations.

The Lac du Flambeau Tribe banished 55 people last week. Now, two brothers are trying to get their family back home.

Christine Turney and her sons Jared and Jalen were banished from Lac Du Flambeau last week.

They had 48 hours to leave. After that was up, Turney says the entire family, including their grandmother and little brothers, was given 5 minutes to leave. Then their home was boarded up.

The Tribe says banishment was related to crime,gangs and drugs. Jalen Lussier, the son of Turney, had ties to gangs.

Public records say he's also on two-years-probation after being found guilty of battery in December. He says he's out of gang life now, but understands the punishment.

"I understand why they are banning me off the res(ervation)," Lussier said. "Me and my brother are accepting it."

But they worry for his family because even those that weren't banished cannot return to the home.

"We would just like to ask the tribe to let my little brothers and grandmother and mother live in that house," Lussier said. "If they want me and my older brother to go, we are willing to go."

Public records show their mother Christine Turney was guilty of having drug paraphernalia in 2006. Since then her record's clean.

"I don't talk to my mom about what I have done," Lussier said. "She still doesn't know, you know what I mean, she's innocent."

The Lac du Flambeau Tribal Council released a statement Friday holding strong to their stance.

"We continue our aggressive position that drug abuse, gang activity and property destruction are not acceptable on our lands," the statement said. "Our community has lost 12 people in the last three years to these behaviors, and we are committed to protecting our People."

Turney continues to look for work and a place to live, but hopes to return.

"We just want to live peacefully there on the reservation,"Turney said.

That's impossible unless the banishment's change. Jalen and his brother Jared hope their family can return, but they know what they need to do.

"The best thing to do right now is a get a job and get out of here," Lussier said.

That's exactly what the Lac du Flambeau Tribe wants.

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MINOCQUA - By the time most of us finish breakfast, we already start planning what to eat for lunch.

For some kids all around the world, that next meal sometimes never comes.

The Food for Kidz Minocqua committee will lend a helping hand to change that Saturday morning.

Lakeland Union High School's common area will transform into a full-blown assembly line.

Food for Kidz volunteers will pour and pack ingredients into plastic bags.

The goal is 175,000 packed meals.

Food for Kidz needs more volunteers by tomorrow to meet that goal.

"If you haven't experienced this, come out and try it and you'll go away with just a great feeling," said Food for Kidz co-chair John Breiten.

Kids and adults of all ages are welcome to walk in to volunteer.

The food packages will be shipped off to anywhere from Honduras to Mozambique.

Some special meals will be set aside and sent to local communities in the Northwoods.

"It's just a great, fun community event. I think the kids especially take something away that they are giving beyond themselves," said Food for Kidz sponsor and Lakeland Union High School Spanish teacher Karen Roerich.

Walk-in volunteers are welcome to attend either packing shift tomorrow morning.

The first shift is from 8 a.m. to 10 a.m. The second shift is from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m.

If you can't make it out to Lakeland Union High School Saturday, donations are always welcome.

Call John Breiten at 715-686-7570 for more info.

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